Did Microsoft just kill Flash? IE10 won’t run Flash unless your site is on a Microsoft whitelist!

Yeah you read that right. I just received an interesting email from Brightcove (the video delivery guys) about issues with their Flash based solution and Windows 8 running the new Internet Explorer 10. To quote:

We wanted to make you aware of a development with Microsoft around Windows 8 that may affect your video content delivered through Brightcove Video Cloud.

Background
Microsoft is expected to release the next version of Windows, Windows 8, on October 26th. With Windows 8, Microsoft has made a decision to limit the use of Flash as a means for delivering content and move toward a concept of a plug-in free experience in Internet Explorer 10. As a result, sites will not be allowed to serve Flash in Internet Explorer 10 unless they have been given prior approval and have been whitelisted by Microsoft.

What this means for you
The default browser experience in the new Windows UI will not allow Flash unless the site has been approved and granted access by Microsoft. Therefore, if a Brightcove Video Cloud customer is looking for a full featured playback experience that is on par with Windows 7 today, they will need to submit a request to Microsoft in order to be whitelisted.

My initial reaction was “surely not???” and a quick search of the web indicates that there is a great deal of confusion as to what the IE10 behavior will actually be. However the Brightcove email provides an link to a handy Microsoft support article which clears things up.

Basically:

  1. Windows 8 ships with two (!) versions of Internet Explorer 10. One for the desktop experience and one for the Windows UI experience.
  2. Both ship with a built in version of Flash BUT the Windows UI version won’t run Flash unless your site is on a whitelist. The Desktop version will run Flash as normal.
  3. You can add a meta tag to your pages which will trigger a prompt to the user to run your site in the desktop IE if they visit it using the Windows UI version of IE (a lovely user experience… not)
  4. Lastly they give details on how you get you site added to the whitelist (basically emailing Microsoft with the details of your site and details of how it conforms to Microsoft’s Flash Content Guidelines)

Buried in the support article is the following reasoning for the difference in behavior between the Desktop and Windows UI IE version’s Flash support:

While any site can play Flash content in Internet Explorer 10 for the desktop, only sites that are on the Compatibility View (CV) list for Flash can play Flash content within Internet Explorer 10 in the the new Windows UI. We place sites with Flash content on the CV list if doing so delivers the best user experience in Internet Explorer 10 with those sites. For example, how responsive is the content to touch? Does it work well with the onscreen keyboard, or affect battery life? Do visual prompts comply with the Windows Store app user experience guidelines? Sites that rely on capabilities (for example, rollover events and peer-to-peer (P2P) functionality) that are not supported within Windows UX guidelines for Windows Store apps, and don’t degrade gracefully in their absence, are better off running in Internet Explorer 10 for the desktop with Flash.

Which seems fair enough but kinda underscores the point that having the Windows UI on the desktop version of Windows 8 (and making it the default) doesn’t really make sense when you consider what the user will be doing when they sit down at a PC to work.

It will be interesting to see if Windows 8 lands with a splash or a thud on October 26. I suspect it might be a thud and a whimper. Certainly it looks like Flash and the web are going to be in for a rough ride.

 

84 comments on “Did Microsoft just kill Flash? IE10 won’t run Flash unless your site is on a Microsoft whitelist!”

  1. [...] that right. I just received an interesting email from Brightcove (the video delivery guys) about issues with their Flash based solution and Windows 8 running the new Internet Explorer 10. [...]

  2. Jakob says:

    Flash can go die anyway

  3. [...] Acabamos de receber um interessante email da Brightcove (os caras que distribuem vídeos) sobre os problemas com a solução baseada em Flash que usam e o Windows 8 rodando o novo Internet Explorer [...]

  4. [...] Did Microsoft just kill Flash? IE10 won’t run Flash unless your site is on a Microsoft whitelist! … Nya Windows 8 UI (tablet-inriktningen) har hårda restriktioner när det gäller Flash. [...]

  5. [...] Acabamos de receber um interessante email da Brightcove (os caras que distribuem vídeos) sobre os problemas com a solução baseada em Flash que usam e o Windows 8 rodando o novo Internet Explorer 10. Citando-os: Queremos avisá-los que o [...]

  6. [...] In Apps Flash is behind the door usually except in Google Chrome Web Apps that can be simple links to Flash based websites. AIR is dead meanwhile as well. The AIR App Marketplaces always sucked (I had it on my WeTab) so it was no big loss. Windows 8 Apps can be either HTML5 or native. In Windows 8 Internet Explorer 10 comes with some own Flash version but only white listed website can run it! (more: http://www.infoworld.com/t/microsoft-windows/flash-windows-8-thats-just-part-of-the-story-194315 & http://blog.rabidgremlin.com/2012/10/11/did-microsoft-just-kill-flash-ie10-wont-run-flash-unless-you…). [...]

  7. Todd Gaines says:

    No, Apple began the grave by starting that precedent but flash was far from dead. If what this article says is true then it surely will be the beginning of the end for Flash.

  8. [...] Acabamos de receber um interessante email da Brightcove (os caras que distribuem vídeos) sobre os problemas com a solução baseada em Flash que usam e o Windows 8 rodando o novo Internet Explorer [...]

  9. shahzeb says:

    No Problem for browsing purpose most of the people still using Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome, so we will use the same browser,

  10. Mark says:

    What will this mean for flash based adverts served via Google adsense? Will ad publishers need to have their sites whitelisted, or will it be the advertisers that will need to be whitelisted?

  11. Steve says:

    I think of it more like, Will Sites Ban Internet Explorer.

    With the availability of a vast array of optional web browsers today.
    Maybe it’s just time to kill Internet Explorer.

    Who’s next to set up a white list site owners need to qualify for , your town, state, country.

    Fight Censorship, Dump Internet Explorer!

    P.S.

    Microsoft, let ICANN do their job, you do yours…

    • Carlos says:

      Steve,
      That is it. Let’s kill internet explorer.
      Every website I do from now on I am going to put a message like the website below:
      http://ff0000.com

      Open it using Internet Explorer.
      They called A vintage navigator and give you the good options.
      United we can do something.
      See you buddy,

  12. tommy says:

    All the more reason to give the finger to Microsoft (and Apple) and move to Linux.

  13. Celeste Suliin Burris says:

    I moved to standards-based development a long time ago. Any work I do is making the site HTML5 compliant. Even Adobe has provided tools to migrate to a flash-free experience. In most cases, proprietary plugins are going the way of the dodo bird. Folks with the newest technology won’t mess with plugins – they want the website to work on Linux, Macs, iOS as well as Windows. I suspect when you count up mobile users, and add them to the non-Windows desktops, Windows desktops are in a minority. The majority has spoken, and the vote was for HTML5. Those folks who are still living with Internet Explorer 6, with half a dozen plugins, will soon find themselves forced to upgrade.

    • norm says:

      so far, there is no way to get actual audio data from microphone, so there is no way to do automate speech recognition by using the html5 tech, flash still has its reason to be there.

      (i meant i want to actually manipulate the audio data from microphone, for example, distort it, rather than play it directly by using audio tag or send it over by using webrtc)

  14. DJ Kindberg says:

    And what was the designer’s intent? As far as I have seen Microsoft, in the past few years has actually been trying to be as W3C compliant as possible. When Internet Explorer became the defacto standard it is true that Microsoft tried to influence web standards and we ended up with Internet Explorer 6, but the world has changed and there is more competition. IE is no longer a slow beast and is, in many ways, a good browser, on par with FireFox and Chrome and far better than Safari.

    BTW… I am a dedicated FireFox user.

  15. Sije de Haan says:

    No. Microsoft just kills IE this way. Use Chrome.

    • Luciana says:

      I am going to be more MAC than never.
      I had only an iPhone but today I bought two iMACs to my office.
      Don’t see my website in a MOBILE is ok for me but in a desktop computer.
      Bye Microsoft.
      I am going MAC.

  16. Flash Gordon says:

    I agree, IE is by far the worst browser available. It’s like an abandoned ghost ship!

    Anyway, early next year there will be a boom in Flash websites.
    Then the users will have to make a choice…

  17. oteng says:

    I don’t understand MS what do they want to achieve. As a designer i have never used IE to even test my site not of viewing other sites. I always tell my site viewers to use Firefox or chrome and i provide a link for them to download it. MS will loss the battle

    • Paul says:

      Microsoft only destroy other people.
      Do you remember NETSCAPE?
      They killed the guys and ripped them off completely.

      I hope APPLE kick their asses.
      I want to see websites in flash. They are beautiful.

  18. Roy says:

    Microsoft didn’t kill flash, just gave the final blow.

  19. youKilledKenny says:

    Dude.

    You shall start reading the news.
    This is from ages available.

    And NO. MICROSOFT IS NOT KILLING FLASH.

    Actually Microsoft is the last guardian fully supporting it.
    And whitelisting your page under Microsoft conditions is not killing, but getting rid a bit of the anoing advertisements. ANYWAY – this is actually a wrong choice, since this will get a push to the HTML5 advertisements, and while you could block FLASH advertisements and banners – you will never be able to get rid of HTML5 ones.

    This is the main issue why the big companies in advertisement and software sellings would like to dismiss asap Flash – because the applications build with it is FREE, EASY TO USE, WORKS EVERYWHERE, OVERCREATIVE, ABLE TO BE BLOCKED and so on and on good for the end user things.

    Google and Apple is actually the true killers of free Internet.
    They DON’T CARE about THE USERS. They are selfish, trying to steal the last dollar from the user pockets.

    The anty-Flash wave was emulated just by them – showing on a some empty-between-the-ears peoples that Flash is heavy than HTML4 pages, but noones said that actually HTML5 is about 90 TIMES … yes 90 TIMES heavier than Flash, and in order to create a complex animations with HTML5 will took you about a century compared to 5 minutes with Flash.

    Another problem is with the free software. There is currently about 50 bilions applications and games written in Flash, and they are all FREE.
    Since day 1 HTML5 is not only closed standart, depending much on the platforms on which is executing, but it is written to support applications which will be mostly paid.

    So guys – it is simple as this : so called HTML5 supporters and lovers are just empty-between-the-ears guys, which have zero information, and they are NOT programmers for sure, neither they do support the free software.

  20. Quick Way To Get Money says:

    I’ve been absent for a while, but now I remember why I used to love this web site. Thank you, I’ll try and check back more often. How frequently you update your site?

  21. steve says:

    As a Flash Engineer (yes … there are still a few of us left) I actually agree that Flash does not belong in mobile browsers. I can’t think offhand of a Flash application (video player, game, etc) that I would want to view embedded in a browser page on a smartphone or 7″ tablet. I would want to watch it “Full Screen”, and for that there is Adobe Air. Even Adobe recognized this and are dropping future support for browser-embedded Flash Player on mobile devices. You could perhaps make a case that some Flash apps wouldn’t look too bad in a browser page on a larger format tablets but I don’t think it is worth providing mobile browser support for Flash just for 10″ tablets.

    However, I find it completely ridiculous of Microsoft to make their mobile-optimized Windows UI the default on desktops and notebooks.

  22. [...] Did Microsoft just kill Flash? IE10 won’t run Flash unless your site is on a Microsoft whitelist! [...]

  23. [...] Did Microsoft just kill Flash? IE10 won’t run Flash unless your site is on a Microsoft whitelist! [...]

  24. inainvoices says:

    Yes it does. You can make touch friendly flash apps but if you have to pass trough the validation process every time, it’s a pain in the ass for the developper and it’s time consumming, insteed of loosing time validation app, developer can spent time doing it’s real job : developing !

  25. Paul says:

    I am going to use Chrome for the rest of my life.
    And ask all my family and friends to do it.
    Period.

  26. [...] lista, cuáles se quedan atrás, qué respuesta tendremos por parte de los usuarios, etc. Vía | Rabidgremlin’s soapbox Más información | Microsoft Fuente: [...]

  27. Gwenn says:

    I have had problems with embedded flash objects not working. I had tried every suggestion from all forums, and nothing has worked until now. The final thing that made it all work was selecting Use software rendering instead of GPU rendering (Tools->Internet options->Advanced). Somehow that seems to be what changed when updating either Flash(auto-update installed Chrome) or IE/Windows.

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